We will evaluate each Catholic teaching in light of the inerrant and completely sufficient Word of God (Sola Scriptura). When you consider that God is Almighty, All-Knowing, and All-Kind and Compassionate, you know that He would not deliberately create such a confusing system of Salvation that men could not understand it, or so confusing that they needed their spiritual leaders to "explain" all things to them. Indeed, Scripture teaches this fact over and
over and over again.
Consider these Scriptures:
* "The law of the LORD is perfect, converting the soul: the testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple." [Psalm 19:7] Obviously, God expects the "simple" to comprehend His Scripture. Notice there is no inference that people cannot understand Scripture by themselves.
* "The entrance of thy words giveth light; it giveth understanding unto the simple." [Psalm 119:130]
* "The proverbs of Solomon ... To give subtlety to the simple, to the young man knowledge and discretion." [Proverbs 1:1, 4]
* "For this cause I Paul, the prisoner of Jesus Christ for you Gentiles, If ye have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which is given me to you-ward ... Whereby, when ye read, ye may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ." [Ephesians 3:1, 4]
* In 1 Peter 2:5, and 9, all the saints are called a " royal priesthood". Then, when you understand that the New Covenant of Jesus Christ inaugurated a New Covenant which abolished the old Priesthood of the Old Testament [Hebrews 7:11-25 and 8:5-13, especially verse 13], thus cancelling the Old Covenant of the Old Testament, and abolishing all priests. From this point on, there were no more priests to "interpret" the Scripture; people were expected to hear it read and understand the plain language of it.
Since all this is true, since God expects men and women of all ages to hear, or read, His Word and understand its plain language, then we should expect that God would take great care to protect His Word from contamination or misinterpretation. Indeed, God did take steps to prevent this kind of corruption. Consider the Scriptures below:
"Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish ought [take away] from it, that ye may keep the commandments of the LORD your God ..." [Deuteronomy 4:2]
"What thing soever I command you, observe to do it: thou shalt not add thereto, nor diminish from it." [Deuteronomy 12:32]
"Every word of God is pure ... Add thou not unto his words, lest he reprove thee, and thou be found a liar." [Proverbs 30:5-6] Notice here that anyone who adds to or takes away from God's pure Word is called a "liar".
"For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book." [Revelation 22:18-19]
Therefore, we can see three distinct warnings against adding to or taking away the Words of God from His Holy Bible. The Pharisees and Sadducees of Jesus' day were the leaders of a religious system which was called The Traditions of the Elders, a system which Jesus attacked with all His might, and condemned to the highest degree. In this Tradition of the Elders, the priests and scribes had created a parallel "Scripture" to God's Holy Word. Jesus condemned it because it changed, perverted the true meaning of God's Word, as given to Moses and the Prophets. Listen to Jesus condemn this Traditions of the Elders.
"Why do ye also transgress the commandment of God by your tradition? ... Thus have ye made the commandment of God of none effect by your tradition." [Matthew 15:3-6]
"Then the Pharisees and scribes asked him, Why walk not thy disciples according to the tradition of the elders, but eat bread with unwashen hands? He answered and said unto them, Well hath Esaias prophesied of you hypocrites, as it is written, This people honoureth me with their lips, but their heart is far from me. Howbeit in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men. [Mark 7:5-7] Do you see that Jesus said that anyone who observes the Tradition of the Elders, they are worshipping Him in VAIN?
Now, listen to Jesus continue with His condemnation of this Tradition:
"For laying aside the commandment of God, ye hold the tradition of men ... and many other such like things ye do. And he said unto them, Full well ye reject the commandment of God, that ye may keep your own tradition." Did you get this statement? Jesus is saying that Jews who keep the Tradition of the Elders are, in reality, rejecting the commandments of God?
Now, listen to the Apostle Paul condemn the Traditions of the Jews:
"Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ." [Colossians 2:8] Here, we see the Apostle Paul stating that the Tradition of Men spoil the hearer, and lead him or her to the world not to Jesus Christ.
The Apostle Peter warns his followers along these same lines, as well. Listen:
"Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers" [1 Peter 1:18] Notice here that Peter calls the Tradition of the Fathers "vain conversation".
The Roman Catholic Church has created a system of priesthood that is roughly parallel to the priesthood of the Old Testament, even though the writer to the Hebrews clearly states, above, that this Old Covenant was abolished when Jesus instituted His New Covenant. But, more importantly, the Roman Catholic Church has also created a parallel system of interpretations, which they revealingly call the Traditions of the Fathers, or the Church. They have then told their parishioners that this parallel Traditions is equal with the Scripture in importance and weight. Thus, they are equally guilty before Jesus Christ in " teaching for doctrines the commandments of men" [Mark 7:7]. Thus, they are practicing as vain a worship as Jesus told the Pharisees they were practicing in Mark 7:6, above.
Thus, by creating this parallel system, the Roman Catholic Church is guilty of adding to the pure Word of God [Proverbs 30:5-6]. But, more importantly, the Roman Catholic Church has brought in many actual Pagan teachings and doctrines, have "Christianized" them, and given them Christian names, and then taught them as inspired Scripture to their followers. We will demonstrate all these Pagan teachings, as well.
We would close by showing you one concrete instance where the Roman Catholic Church has fulfilled Bible prophecy in teaching Men's commandments as if they came from God. In
1 Timothy 4:1-2, the Apostle Paul warns Timothy to be wary of a particular kind of heretic. Listen to Paul describe this kind of heretic:
"4:1 Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;
2 Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron"
This kind of person could really sow discord within a Christian church, because while they claimed to be Christian, they were really "giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils". They were teaching Doctrines that demons teach, while claiming that these doctrines were Christian! This kind of person is someone to really stay away from, and when a Christian pastor sees this type person within his congregation, he had better get that person out of his church, immediately.
Now, you may ask, "What are doctrines of devils"? That was a very good question, thought the Apostle Paul, so he gave us two examples. Let us review each example separately.
Example #1 of Doctrines of Devils -- "Forbidding to marry" [1 Timothy 4:3a]
Did you know that Celibacy -- the forbidding to marry -- is not found in the Bible whatsoever? Did you know that Celibacy was a "Doctrine of Devils"? You see, God Himself instituted Marriage in the Garden of Eden, and has blessed it ever since. Since Satan seems to always want to do the opposite of what God does, we should not be surprised that he would teach against marriage (Celibacy). Is it any wonder that the Roman Catholic Church has experienced a never ending struggle with sexual sins amongst its clergy? These poor priests are following a life of Celibacy, a doctrine taught by demons.
Example #2 of Doctrines of Devils -- "Commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth." Did you know that the teaching to abstain from eating meats is a Doctrines of Demons? When the Roman Catholic Church adopted the teaching that a devout Catholic would abstain from eating meat on Friday, or during High Holy Days, that is a Doctrine of Demons. Did you also notice that God states that people who "know the truth" will eat meats, thanking God all the while?
Finally, did you notice verse 2, above? Verse 2 states that people who teach these Doctrines of Devils are "speaking lies in hypocrisy"! Further, we learn from the second part of this verse that such people can teach these lies in hypocrisy because they have no consciences. Listen: "having their conscience seared with a hot iron". This is the condition of any person, or any Church which teaches these Doctrines of Devils.
But, the Roman Catholic Church teaches far more Doctrines that Demons Teach, also known as Paganism. For the past 1,200 years, the Roman Catholic Church has consistently brought in dozens of teachings from Paganism, given them "Christian" names, and then has taught them to the faithful as "Christian" doctrines. In other words, the Church has "added to" the Holy Word of God! They have taught commandments of men as though they were the commandments of God!
How much false doctrine can be brought into a church before God considers the church to be no good? Not much. Listen to Paul warn against false teaching, which he calls "leaven".
"Know ye not that a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump?" In other words, just a tiny bit of leaven [false teaching] ruins the whole lump of dough. Think of how much deadly poison it would take to ruin a perfectly good cup of coffee; just one tiny drop can be enough to kill you. but, the coffee would still look perfectly good, perfectly normal.
When you consider whether to drink a cup of coffee that you know has had a tiny drop of deadly poison in it, are you going to be thinking of the coffee, and excusing the presence of the poison, or are you going to be concentrating on the poison? You would certainly be concentrating on the poison!
Likewise, when we show you the terrible Pagan teachings and practices that the Roman Catholic Church has imported from the many Satanic Mysteries religions, you must understand that these Pagan teachings are deadly spiritual poison being dumped into a perfectly good cup of "coffee". You cannot excuse these spiritual poisons, defending them and trying to say that the good doctrine outweighs the instances of falsehood. No, these Pagan teachings are spiritually deadly poison.
This is another good reason we insist on Sola Scriptura.
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